By now, it’s been widely and conclusively established that the Parkland shooting was an epic failure of everyone involved in every level of government. Whether it was the Broward Schools, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas administration and security staff, the school resource officer, the Broward County Sheriff, or the FBI, every one of them failed to do even the minimum amount necessary to prevent the deaths of seventeen students and teachers.
None of that, however, stopped the Florida legislature from enacting a slate of bills that would have done nothing to stop the shooting that day. But why stop there? As long as there are grandstanding politicians who oppose civilian firearm ownership, there’s always more opportunity to use a colossal failure like Parkland to push still more restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms.
Which brings us to Florida’s Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz. She’s foursquare behind a federal universal background check requirement for ammunition purchases. Yes, ammunition.
And just to ensure she pulls on as many hearstrings as possible when speechifying on the bill’s manifest benefits, she and Da Nang Dick Blumenthal, the bill’s co-authors, named the background check bill after one of the dead Parkland students.
From The Floridian:
The “Jamie’s Law,” which calls for universal background check for individuals looking to purchase ammunition, was named in honor of Jamie Guttenberg who was on of 17 students and teachers killed at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.
“Every day we wait to act and enact reasonable gun safety measures, we risk losing more lives,” said Wasserman Schultz. “It is inexcusable to sit and do nothing while people have their lives torn apart by gun violence. Our communities deserve better.”
There’s only one problem. The Parkland shooter passed a background check and bought the gun he used legally. Thanks to the repeated coddling he received from the school and local law enforcement, he had not criminal record.
Which means that even if the Wasserman Schultz/Blumenthal brainstorm would have been the law of the land at the time, the shooter would have passed a background check for the ammunition purchase as well.
Wasserman Schultz contends that “requiring background checks on ammunition sales” would save lives, and would close the loophole of individuals who are already prohibited from buying a firearm, to be able to purchase ammunition.
That isn’t a “loophole,” by the way. It’s already illegal for prohibited persons (again, the Parkland shooter wasn’t one) to possess ammunition. And a federal background check bill wouldn’t prevent anyone who wants ammunition from getting it, particularly a prohibited person with a gun.
Long story short, “Jamie’s Law” would have done exactly nothing to prevent the Parkland massacre.
But who are we kidding here? The bill was never intended to be passed and signed into law. Like other gun control bills the Democrat-controlled House has passed, its sponsors have no illusions that they’ll ever pass by the Senate, let alone be signed into law by President Trump.
Instead, these are political bills meant to be used as cudgels against Republicans in the coming election year for their failure to enact “common sense gun safety laws.” It’s all part of the pre-election Kabuki theater and battlespace prep that’s going on to give anti-gun politicians as many issues to use in their reelection battles as possible.